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68% Indians want service charge to be optional: Survey

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New Delhi, Jan 11

Sixty-eight per cent of respondents in a country-wide survey, say the service charge levied by hotels and restaurants should be optional, while 27 per cent opposed it.

Five per cent of the 26,000 respondents did not respond in the survey by LocalCircles citizen engagement platform.

Where 61 per cent supported the changing the name of service charge to service tip, 33 per cent did not agree to this and 6 per cent did not comment.

The survey also found that 68 per cent people were willing to pay a tip for good service if it goes to the restaurant staff, 26 per cent were not willing to pay the tip, while 6 per cent chose can’t say as their answer.

This implies that a majority of people are in favour of paying tips.

This exercise was conducted after the Ministry of Consumer Affairs issued a notification on Jan 2 stating that the service charge is completely discretionary and a customer, dissatisfied with the dining experience, can have it waived off.

Almost 42 per cent of respondents believed that the service charge goes to the management, 26 per cent felt that some part of it was shared with the staff, while only 5 per cent of consumers believed that the whole of it was shared by the staff.

This means that distrust with the collection and utilisation of this charge is very high among consumers.

The rationale offered by restaurants for levying a compulsory service charge on all consumers is that it ensures tips to their serving staff.

People were also asked if they wanted the whole of the service cost to be incorporated in the main bill and wanted the tip to be made a completely voluntary thing. To this, 59 per cent said yes, while 37 per cent said no and 4 per cent were non-committal.

 

(IANS)

India

Is operating ratio of Indian Railways the worst: Chidambaram

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P Chidambaram

New Delhi, April 21: Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Saturday asked if the operating ratio of Indian Railways is the worst and added that if the ratio is close to 100 per cent or has exceeded it, that indicated a “comprehensive failure of management.”

He also asked if it was true that the accounts are being “dressed” to show an Operating Ratio just a little less than 100 per cent.

“What is the Operating Ratio of Indian Railways in 2017-18? Is it the worst ratio in recent years,” Chidambaram tweeted.

“Is it correct that the true Operating Ratio has exceeded 100 per cent? Is it correct that the accounts are being ‘dressed’ to show an Operating Ratio just a little less than 100 per cent,” he asked.

“If the Operating Ratio is close to 100 per cent or has exceeded 100 per cent, that indicates a comprehensive failure of management of the Indian Railways,” Chidambaram said.

IANS

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No parole for mafia don Abu Salem to get married

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A file photo of gangster Abu Salem being taken to jail after a Mumbai court sentenced him life imprisonment in the Pradeep Jain murder case in 2015.

Mumbai, April 21: The Maharashtra government on Saturday rejected an application by incarcerated mafia don Abu Salem seeking 45 days parole for getting married, official sources said here.

Among the grounds cited by the authorities are that parole is not permitted for those accused or convicted of terror charges under the revised parole rules of the Maharashtra government in 2016, an official, who declined to be identified, told IANS.

Abu Salem, who is currently undergoing life imprisonment in Taloja Central Jail, Navi Mumbai, had applied in March to the Konkan Divisional Commissioner for parole for his second marriage with Sayed Bahar Kauser alias Heena.

The marriage was scheduled for May 5 in Mumbai and he had also provided the names and details of two of his cousins who were willing to stand guarantee for him.

He planned to stay temporarily at the Mumbai home of his prospective wife Heena during the parole duration.

In his application, Abu Salem cited how he was in jail continuously since the past more than 12 years without stepping out on parole/furlough even once.

In September 2017, Abu Salem – a close confidante of absconding mafia don Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar – was convicted and sentenced to a life sentence for his role in the March 1993 serial bomb blasts in Mumbai which killed 257 and wounded over 700 others.

IANS

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Cabinet approves restructured scheme for making local bodies self-sustainable

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (File Photo: IANS)

New Delhi, April 21 (IANS) The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Saturday approved a restructured Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA) scheme aimed at making rural local bodies self-sustainable, financially stable and more efficient.

Addressing a press conference here, Union Panchayati Raj Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said Prime Minister Narendra Modi — who chaired the CCEA meeting — will officially launch the scheme on April 24 in Madhya Pradesh’s Mandla.

The total outlay for the scheme during 2018-19 to 2021-2022 would be Rs 7,255 crore, of which 60 per cent would be borne by the Centre.

Tomar said the RGSA will help more than 2.55 lakh Panchayati Raj Institutions to develop governance capabilities to deliver on sustainable development goals through inclusive local governance, with a focus on optimum utilisation of available resources.

IANS

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